Xbox CEO comments again on Activision Blizzard acquisition

While the deal between Microsoft and Activision Blizzard is being scrutinized by regulators around the world, the Xbox company’s conflicts with Sony have intensified. Console boss Phil Spencer once again shared his thoughts on the matter.

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Spencer was interviewed on CNBC last Thursday (15). The conversation brought up Sony and PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan’s comments about Microsoft’s “Call of Duty” bid. According to Ryan, the Xbox offering was “inadequate” on several levels.

In the interview, Spencer was asked about the promise to keep the game on PlayStation for “several years” and whether the question could go further, such as ensuring the FPS would stay on Sony’s console forever. The head of Xbox said his expectation is that Call of Duty will continue on PlayStation and other platforms.

Image: Play/Microsoft

“I can’t say much about the current state of the regulatory processes just because of the mechanism involved,” Spencer said. “I’ve made it clear publicly to our fans and customers, our biggest commitment, that our expectation is that we will continue to ship Call of Duty on PlayStation and other platforms where people can play it. I hope to expand the number of places where people play all our games,” he added.

Expanding Xbox’s influence is the goal over the next few years, Spencer said, developing titles that all gamers can access. “This was our goal. We put the player at the center, and through technologies like cloud, day, and delivery date on PC, our expectation is that the games we build will be played by more players in the future. That’s our goal in every match we’re playing now.”

Another topic in the interview was the inclusion of “Call of Duty” in Xbox Game Pass, which has become another branch of Activision Blizzard’s acquisition and Sony’s concern. In this sense, the console boss said that the subscription service is not an attack that tries to “crush the competition”, but the result of Microsoft’s attempt to compete with PlayStation.

“When I look at Game Pass specifically, I think it’s a result of the competition in our market,” Spencer said. “We sat down with Microsoft and Xbox and thought, ‘How can we innovate and create value…for gamers?'” So we created a new model for consumers building their game libraries, and gamers love it. I think that’s what competition is all about.”

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In addition, Spencer also talked about the issue of Xbox prices, and according to him, Microsoft does not plan to increase the cost of consoles at this time. The head of the console emphasized that the financial moment is difficult and such a measure would not be the “correct action” with the brand’s customers.

Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard in 2022 has been a hot topic of debate in the gaming industry. According to the Xbox company, analysis by several countries’ regulatory boards will still take several months to finalize the deal. It is expected only next year.

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